As a student going to University in my state, searching for an apartment during Coronavirus filled my search with uncertainty and many "what-if" scenarios going through my mind. On one hand, I was hoping to be back on campus with my close friends, living in the city, and taking proper precautions. On the other hand, the ups and downs of COVID made it nearly impossible to see a clear outcome for the Fall Quarter, making it risky to commit to a lease. Now that many Universities are solidifying safe plans for the Fall, students who originally had some classes in person are now living in apartments in states over or even near their hometown, just to have their classes be online.
At first, I was frustrated with the situation, feeling like colleges could have been more transparent with the direction they were heading in. However, I cannot imagine the pressure many Universities are taking on during this time, trying to find the safest and smartest option. I feel lucky that my roommate and I signed our lease earlier so that we could still be a part of our school's culture in some way, just by being around the campus, as well as other students from a distance. Spending time with a small group of individuals and using on-campus resources such as the library is a smart way to make the most of moving into a place that may not be as necessary as once thought. There is also room for possible internship opportunities and students will be able to be a part of projects more hands than they would over Zoom if they practice distancing safely.
Luckily, a few higher-level classes are being held hybrid or in person, so many upperclassmen will have the opportunity to return to campus and have in-person resources.
My fears include not being able to successfully retain the information I learn from an online class or struggling to stay motivated to be a part of activities and commitments academically related. I also worry about the health and safety of myself and my friends, as Lincoln Park cases begin to rise, especially in the 18-29 age group according to Block Club Chicago. Everyone is over this pandemic, but the pandemic is unfortunately not over. Until this has been further resolved and medical professionals say otherwise, masks need to stay on, and proper distancing needs to be enforced to help keep this under control. The more on top of it we as a community stay, the safer we will all be. An unsafe drink with friends isn't worth someone else's, or your personal mourning and pain. Please take every day seriously, as we are all feeling the same annoyance and pain.